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The WACSOF’ RECONNECT Information Session was held on 19th October 2023, where Mr. Kop’ep Dabugat, the General Secretary of WACSOF (West Africa Civil Society Forum), briefed stakeholders on the current happenings within the organization. This report aims to provide a summary of the session and its key highlights.

Summary of Mr. Kop’ep Dabugat’s Briefing:
1.     Background and Appointment:
Mr. Kop’ep Dabugat highlighted that he was appointed to the position of General Secretary with the objective of restructuring the organization. He emphasized the need to address the existing challenges and move the Forum towards a more organized and effective entity.
2.     Key Objectives:
During the information session, Mr. Kop’ep Dabugat identified three primary objectives for WACSOF:
a.    Reorganize the Institution:
The first objective is to reorganize the institution to enhance its operational efficiency and effectiveness. By implementing better management practices, streamlining processes, and promoting transparency, WACSOF aims to improve overall organizational performance.
b.    Regain Partners’ Trust:
The second objective is to regain the trust of partners who have been involved with WACSOF. By addressing any past issues and ensuring clear and effective communication, WACSOF intends to restore strong and reliable relationships with its partners.
c.     Organize the People’s Forum:
The third objective is to organize the People’s Forum. Mr. Dabugat stressed the importance of engaging with all WACSOFs stakeholders by organizing in the shortest time possible the People’s Forum which is the Organization’s General Assembly to give room for their active involvement indecision-making processes.

3.     Action Plan:
Mr. Kop’ep Dabugat outlined a comprehensive action plan to achieve these objectives:

a.    Strengthening Management Capacity:
This aspect of the plan focuses on enhancing the management capacity of WACSOF. Specific measures include strengthening the regional secretariat, reactivating National Platforms, resolving any issues with the former Secretary General, and organizing the People’s Forum.
b.    Increasing WACSOF’s Visibility:
The second part of the plan emphasizes the need to increase WACSOF’s visibility in addressing regional integration and development issues in West Africa. This will be achieved through strategic communication efforts, such as strengthening communication infrastructures and engaging with media through chats, conducting regular press briefings, and dissemination of useful information to assist civil society engagement around regional integration and development in West Africa through publishing of informative newsletters and information packages.
c.     Reengaging and Strengthening Partnerships
The third part of the action plan aims to reengage and strengthen partnerships with WACSOF’s traditional partners, including ECOWAS, the Ford Foundation, GPPAC, WACSI, as well as establishing collaborations with new partners. This collaboration will enable WACSOF to leverage shared resources and expertise to drive meaningful change in the region.

4.     Participants’ Support and Advice:
During the session, participants expressed their support for Mr. Dabugat’s efforts in restructuring WACSOF. They commended his vision and committed to assist in achieving the outlined objectives. Moreover, they provided valuable advice on strategic approaches to proceed, offering suggestions on areas such as governance, resource mobilization, and advocacy techniques.

The WACSOF’ RECONNECT Information Session provided valuable insights into the current state of the organization and the vision for its future. Mr. Kop’ep Dabugat’s briefing on the reorganization objectives, action plan, and partnership strategies demonstrated a clear roadmap for WACSOF’s progress. The support and advice expressed by the participants signify a shared commitment to the successful revitalization of WACSOF It is therefore crucial for all stakeholders to support these efforts to ensure the achievement of WACSOF’s goals and contribute to positive change in the West African region.

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